Edited by Observer for New Age Islam
(The sense and the meaning of the original has been maintained. The original article is split in 3 parts.)
The Four Principles of ‘Jihad as War’ Are:
1. The first principle of ‘Jihad as war’ is that it is only the prerogative of the state to declare and wage war. It is solely the responsibility of the state to announce, manage and control Jihad. Islam rules out any concept of private army.
2. The second principle of ‘Jihad as war’ is that it is permissible only to avert oppression or to fight against those who fight you. It is not permissible against a peaceful people.
3. The third principle is that war is disallowed against countries with which there is a peace accord or diplomatic relations without an annulment of the accord even if it is found guilty of oppressing its Muslim residents.
4. The fourth principle is that Jihad should be declared only when all material resources are available in order to materialize the strategy and there are bright prospects of winning the war and sustaining it too.
“There is a consensus among the whole Ummah that ‘Jihad’ and ‘Qital’ were disallowed before the migration to Madina. All Quranic verses at that time instructed the Muslims to be patient at the oppression by the pagans”. (Ma’araf-al-Quran, Vol. 1 page: 469)The initial Quranic verses that allowed war against oppression are included in Surah Al-Hajj. The Quran Says.
“Permission (to take up arms) is hereby given to those who are attacked, because they have been wronged. Allah has power to grant them victory: those who have been unjustly driven from their homes only because they said: ‘Our lord is Allah’. (Al-Hajj 22:39-40)
The words “Permission is hereby given” indicate that permission for war had not been granted before. The words “Those who have been unjustly driven from their homes” prove that first they migrated, assumed power and then they were allowed to undertake war.
The words, “they have been wronged” prove that Islam allows ‘Jihad’ only against oppression.
The other verses in the context of Jihad were revealed in Al-Baqarah as 190---193, 216 and 224. The Quran says,
“Fight for the sake of Allah those that fight against you, but do not transgress the limits.Allah does not love those who transgress the limits”. (Al-Baqara 2:190)
The history of prophets reveals that no prophet was allowed to undertake Jihad without having assumed power as head of a state although every prophet was wronged, persecuted, driven out of their homes, slain or crucified. The examples are, Noah, Loot, Saleh, Shoaib, Ibrahim, Musa, Younis and Christ. The prophet, Musa did not fight until he had brought the Bani-Israil from Egypt and organized a nation in the free territory of the desert of Sina. Jesus was not commanded to fight against his enemies because he was not granted rule though he followed and practiced ‘Torat’, which has clear instructions about Jihad which Moses followed as leader of a free nation.
The Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) was not a ruler during the earlier Makkan period and therefore he never took up arms despite oppression and even the killing of his followers. He directed his companions during the Makkan period to show tolerance. For example when Sumayya and her husband, Yasir were martyred, he told their relatives not to take revenge rather said, “I assure you of paradise in return to this oppression”. The Prophet explained the concept of ruler and Jihad through one of his orders:
“A Muslim ruler is a shield for Muslims. Qital is only possible under his leadership and this is why people seek his shelter. (It means that he has to take the final decision in all matters including war and peace)” (Bokhari, 2957)
Islam clearly instructs Muslims not to be divided into several factions and sects rather they should remain united. They can only defend themselves when they remain loyal to their state and government, try to rectify every mistake of the government peacefully and follow the rule in every matter of collective nature. The Quran says:
“Cling one and all to the faith of Allah and let nothing divide you. Remember the favors He has bestowed upon you: how He united your hearts when you were enemies, so that you are now brothers through His grace; and how He delivered you from the abyss of fire when you were on the very brink of it”. (Al-Imran 3:103)
Those who split into factions and fight with each other or with their government, take their nation to the “abyss of fire.”
“Obey Allah and His Apostle and do not dispute with one another, lest you should lose courage and your resolve weakens. Have patience: Allah is with those that are patient”. (Al-Anfal 8:46)
Except for two or three scholars, there is a consensus of all scholars all through history that the prerogative for declaring war rests only with the State. Al-Syed-al-Sabiq writes in “Fiqah-al-Sunnah”:
“The third kind of “KafayaFaraiz” is conditioned with the requirement of a ruler of a sovereign state like Jihad and the punishment of criminals because the sole right in all these matters rests with the ruler. No one else has the right to fix limits for any one”. (Fiqah-al-Sunnah, Vol 3. Page: 10)
MaulanaZafar Ahmed Thanvi expressed the same opinion while throwing light on the issue in “Aala’a-al-Sunnah” Vol 12, page: 3-6.
The Hazards Of A War Without State Declaration:
“War is the prerogative of only the state”. This is not only an injunction of the Quran but the historical truth is that an armed struggle led by an army of a State with sovereignty over a territory alone has met with success.
The reason is clear. If the people go on forming their own armed factions and different political parties erect their private armies, do not respect the state treaties and declare war on their own, the country would be stricken with chaos and anarchy. It would affect the country negatively both internally as well as externally, will become weak and fragmented and will soon cease to exist as a nation.
Dr. Muhammad Farooq Khan, an associate and student of Javed Ahmad Ghamidi was martyred by Taliban on October 2, 2010
(This limited permission to New Age Islam is in accordance with the copyrights transferred to Al-Mawrid by the family of Dr. Muhammad Farooq Khan.)
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